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EUSA Pharma Divests Monoclonal Antibody Research Business and Early-Stage Oncology Product

Strategic Transactions Increase EUSA's Focus on Late-Stage and Marketed


DOYLESTOWN, Pennsylvania and OXFORD, England, May 1 /PRNewswire/ -- EUSA Pharma Inc ('EUSA'), a transatlantic specialty pharmaceutical company focused on oncology, pain control and critical care, today announced that it has divested its monoclonal antibody research business to the French company International Drug Development (IDD). Concurrently, EUSA has divested its recombinant L-asparaginase therapeutic research program for acute lymphoblastic leukemia to the Alize Pharma Group. EUSA acquired both the antibody business and oncology program as part of its 2007 acquisition of OPi SA.

"These two transactions further underline EUSA's ongoing success in divesting early-stage programs while retaining a clear strategic focus on late-stage and marketed products," said Bryan Morton, Chief Executive of EUSA Pharma. "As we continue to rapidly build our business around our commercial infrastructure in the US and Europe, we are creating the opportunity to compete effectively with major players as an attractive partner for companies seeking specialist transatlantic commercialization and late-stage development expertise in the oncology, pain control and critical care areas."

EUSA's antibody research business is based in Dardilly, France, and consists of a team of research and development scientists, laboratories and a library of approximately 600 murine antibodies, of which a high proportion are currently characterized. The fully human anti-interleukin-6 antibody, which EUSA recently out-licensed to GlaxoSmithKline, was the first therapeutic antibody to arise from this library. Other antibodies derived from the library target indications in oncology and inflammation.

The divestment agreement for EUSA's recombinant L-asparaginase therapeutic research program includes an option for the company to license back any resulting product. This provides EUSA with access to a potential future product that has an ideal fit with the company's oncology focus.

About EUSA Pharma Inc

EUSA Pharma is a rapidly growing transatlantic specialty pharmaceutical company focused on in-licensing, developing and marketing late-stage oncology, pain control and critical care products. The company currently has six products on the market, including the antibiotic surgical implant Collatamp(R) G, Erwinase(R) and Kidrolase(R) for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, and Rapydan(R), a rapid-onset anesthetic patch which recently received Europe-wide approval. EUSA also has several products in late-stage development, notably Collatamp(R) G topical, a gentamicin impregnated collagen sponge for the prevention and treatment of infected skin ulcers, and CollaRx(R) bupivacaine implant* for local post-surgical pain control.

Founded in 2006, EUSA Pharma is supported by a consortium of leading life science capital investors, comprising TVM Capital, Essex Woodlands, 3i, Goldman Sachs, Advent Venture Partners, SV Life Sciences, NeoMed and NovaQuest. Since its foundation, the company has raised over $225 million and completed several significant transactions, including the acquisitions of Talisker Pharma Ltd, the French biopharmaceutical company OPi SA and the European antibiotic and pain control business of Innocoll Pharmaceuticals Inc. As part of its rapid growth strategy the company has established commercial infrastructure in the US, a pan-European presence covering over 20 countries and a wider distribution network in a further 25 territories. EUSA Pharma plans to continue its aggressive program of acquisitions and in-licensing within its specialist areas of medical and geographic focus, in line with its ambitious target to create a rapidly growing $1 billion company by the beginning of the next decade.

*CollaRx(R) is a registered trademark of Innocoll Technologies Ltd.

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